Parents seeking to have a child baptized at St. Ambrose or St. Matthew parishes must call the parish office at 724-697-4129 at least four weeks prior to the desired date for their child’s baptism. Parents seeking to have a child baptized at St. Sylvester Parish should call the parish office at 724-468-5794. Please note that first time parents should contact the respective parish office to arrange a meeting and attend a baptism preparation session with the priest.
Prior to contacting the parish education office, parents should decide who they wish to have as the baby’s godparents. Children must have a godfather and a godmother who meet the necessary requirements to be a godparent.
Qualifications of Sponsor Eligibility
- Be designated by the candidate, by the parents or guardians, or the pastor.
- Have the qualifications and intention of performing the role of sponsor.
- Be at least 16 years old.
- Be a fully initiated Catholic (received baptism, confirmation and Eucharist).
- Lead a life in harmony with the faith and role of a sponsor (i.e., be an active member of a parish, attend Mass on Sundays, participate in the sacraments and holy days, not be in an irregular marriage, etc.).
- Not be bound by a canonical penalty.
- Not be the father or mother of the one to be baptized.
Our diocese continues the practice of requiring proof of eligibility for sponsorship (in accord with the qualifications above) from the parish in which the sponsor is registered.
The number of sponsors
- Only one sponsor is required for baptism.
- If, two sponsors are chosen one must be male and the other female.
- If necessary, the second sponsor may be a Christian witness (i.e., a non-Catholic Christian may fulfill this role).
In the event that neither the candidate, nor the parents or guardians select a sponsor, pastors may appoint a member of the parish community to fill the role of sponsor. Many parents are often concerned that they cannot find a suitable sponsor for a variety of reasons (i.e., unavailability of family members, being new to the area or unfamiliar with parishioners, etc.).
Non-Christians may not serve as a godparent for a child’s baptism.
Letters of approval to serve as a sponsor cannot be issued to persons who find themselves in one or more of the following categories:
- Persons married outside of the church.
- Divorced persons who have remarried without an annulment.
- Unmarried persons who are cohabitating.
- Catholics in name only and persons not registered at one of the Partner Parishes of St. Ambrose, St. Matthew or St. Sylvester.